June 19, 2019


Washington, D.C.U.S. Senator Joe Manchin (D-WV) applauds the passage of the Blue Water Navy Vietnam Veterans Act of 2019 via unanimous consent. Since 1991, Vietnam Veterans who were exposed to Agent Orange have received benefits, but only those on the ground or in land waters, not Veterans on deep-water naval vessels. The Blue Water Navy Vietnam Veterans Act expands the definition of “boots on the ground” in Vietnam and in turn extends disability benefits to veterans who served on Navy ships off the coast of Vietnam who came into contact with herbicides, specifically Agent Orange, used during the Vietnam War. The Blue Water Navy Vietnam Veterans Act also extends benefits to those who served in the Korean Demilitarized Zone, as well as to children, born to Veterans who served in Thailand, who suffer from Spina Bifida. The Blue Water Navy Vietnam Veterans Act passed the U.S. House of Representatives on May 14th, 2019 and now heads to the President's desk for signature.

“Our nation’s Veterans have fought bravely overseas for our country and deserve these benefits owed to them here at home. These toxins have detrimentally affected the lives of thousands of Blue Water Navy Veterans who, because of this bill, will be able to gain the benefits they deserve. I sincerely thank all of the Veterans who served in Vietnam for their service and dedication to our nation,” said Senator Manchin.

This bill is supported by the American Legion, Disabled American Veterans, Vietnam Veterans of America, Military Officers Association of America, Fleet Reserve Association, Veterans of Foreign Wars of the United States, Paralyzed Veterans of America, AMVETS, and Military Order of the Purple Heart.